Medical Malpractice FAQs
Doctors, hospitals and other health care providers have an obligation to patients. They must provide you with a reasonably skilled level of care so that you do not end up suffering a worse illness or injury as a result of getting medical help. Unfortunately, sometimes healthcare providers aren't able to live up to their obligations and they actually hurt you instead of helping you. When this happens, you may have a claim for medical malpractice.
Medical negligence is a serious and sad event that has physical, financial and legal consequences. To help you better understand the legal consequences of medical negligence so you can protect your rights, the Boston medical malpractice lawyers at the Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman, LLC have prepared some medical malpractice FAQ. These questions and answers will provide you with an overview of what you need to know about Massachusetts medical malpractice laws, but there is no substitute for proper legal advice. That's why we also offer free no-obligation consultations to victims of medical negligence. Contact us today using our online form or via phone at (617) 367-2900 to learn how we can help.Medical Malpractice FAQ
Some of the many questions that our Boston medical malpractice lawyers have been asked by clients include the following:
- When can I sue for medical negligence?
You can sue for medical negligence or medical malpractice whenever a doctor or healthcare provider provides care that falls below the standard that a reasonable professional would provide. Your doctor's actions are compared with what a hypothetical reasonable doctor with their same skill level and experience would have done in order to determine if the doctor was negligent or not. You will also need to show that the negligence was the direct cause of some type of actual harm.
- Can misdiagnosis or failure to read test results properly lead to a medical malpractice claim?
If a hypothetical reasonable doctor would not have failed to read your test results or would not have misdiagnosed you, then it is possible that a medical malpractice claim may be brought based on your doctor's failure to diagnose you. The biggest challenge will be proving that the failed diagnosis actually caused you harm that wouldn't have occurred if you'd been diagnosed properly. Your Boston medical malpractice lawyer will help you to gather this evidence of causation, as it is called in legal terms.
- What types of evidence do I need in medical malpractice cases?
Typically, you will need to have expert witness testimony in order to prove a medical malpractice case. This is necessary because a judge or jury does not have the medical knowledge to know what a reasonable doctor would have done or why your doctor fell short. Your Massachusetts medical malpractice attorney can help you to find the expert witnesses and other evidence you need.
- Who can be sued for medical malpractice?
Doctors, hospitals, clinics, dentists, chiropractors and other healthcare providers who have a professional obligation to you as a patient can all be sued for medical malpractice.
- Do I have to go to court?
When you sue for medical malpractice, often the doctor or healthcare provider's malpractice insurer will offer you an out-of-court settlement. If this settlement is fair and reasonable, you can accept the settlement and avoid going to court. Your medical malpractice lawyer will help you to determine if a settlement is fair or will assist you in negotiating a reasonable settlement.
- What types of compensation can I receive?
You should receive compensation for all medical bills and costs arising out of the doctor or healthcare provider's negligence. You should also receive compensation for lost wages, pain and suffering, emotional distress and other damages. If the medical malpractice resulted in the death of the victim, the family members of the victim can sue for wrongful death damages to hold the doctor or care provider responsible.
- Do I really need a lawyer?
Medical malpractice cases are often considered to be among the most complex of tort cases because there are thorny medical issues involved and because causation can be hard to prove. Having a lawyer help you build your case is essential to getting the compensation you deserve.
To learn more about how a Boston medical malpractice lawyer can help you if you are a victim of Massachusetts medical negligence, contact The Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman, LLC today at (617) 367-2900 or using our online form.